24.4% of Irish people will take their main holiday at home this year according to the findings of an AA Travel Insurance poll. Whilst the Irish tourism market has seen a sharp decline in visitors from key overseas markets over the past year, the green grasses of home are proving popular with Irish holiday goers. The poll is based on a survey of 6,647 AA customers. This is positive news for the Irish hotel industry which generates 65% of its business from domestic travelers according to Failte Ireland.
Spain is in second position with 14% of respondents citing it as their main holiday destination in 2010. The UK and France are neck and neck for the third spot, both attracting 9.3%. Italy and Portugal will attract 5% and 5.2% respectively. In total, 75.3% of those surveyed have or plan to holiday in Europe this year placing long-haul travelers in the minority. 8.6% indicated that they have no plans to take a holiday this year with wages cuts, limited resources, higher taxes, dependent, out of work adult children and unemployment among the reasons given. Respondents in the 25 – 35 year old category are less likely to be taking a holiday in 2010 than their older counterparts. More men than women said that they are holding out for last minute holiday deals.
Conor Faughnan, Director of Policy, AA Ireland: “It’s good news for Ireland, but at home our abroad our message is make sure that you are properly insured. It’s possible you’ve gone on holidays many times without travel insurance and never needed it. However when you talk to someone who has, they’ll tell you it was a life line. People are really saving up to go on holiday these days. Unplanned medical bills and other unexpected costs while abroad are the last thing people can afford.”
The poll also reveals that of those who had been on backpacking holidays, 24% had personally experienced theft, 40.8% had experienced lost luggage and 29.9% had experienced illness or injury. AA Ireland strongly encourages travelers to secure peace of mind when travelling abroad by taking out comprehensive travel insurance that matches their needs.